With many valley residents, I have watched with interest the construction on Salt Lake City's Main Street over the past year and its reopening in mid-November. Prominent in the new Main Street are the light-rail tracks now present between South Temple and 100 South.
Many news stories about the reopening made mention of the new tracks but all failed to address the controversial nature of the tracks on Main Street. Thousands of Salt Lake residents have now seen the tracks, many with anger in the fact that the tracks have been placed on Main Street against the public will and despite strong objection from the Main Street business community.In the above, the UTA has blundered again. A public relations triumph could have been theirs by listening to the public, gaining in the process the support of many who previously had viewed UTA with suspicion. Instead, they have turned perhaps countless numbers of residents like myself, enthusiastic proponents of mass transit, including light rail, against the project solely because of putting it on Main Street. They have also ensured ongoing controversy and may rest assured that the public will ultimately have its way in this matter.
It should be remembered that early last year the UTA went to court in a knowing and successful attempt to prevent the public from having a say on where the tracks should be placed in downtown Salt Lake City. This same agency that prevented public input in court will soon seek financial assistance from that same public for their trains at the ballot box. Residents can use their ballots at that time to advise the UTA how they feel about the court action of last year and how they feel about the trains ruining downtown Salt Lake City's primary thoroughfare.
Stephen M. Snow
Salt Lake City